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Issue 515
July 2012

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The Art of Looking Busy

written by: Pam Parr, senior strategist

 

In today’s uncertain economy, even the most respected, hardest working, dedicated employees can lose their job through no fault of their own. Over many years of people watching and thousands of hours working with managers and executives we have learned an amazing truth; busy people don’t seem to get laid off or fired. Busy people don’t get extra work assignments. Busy people don’t get ulcers...

 

Very interesting… These folks aren’t more productive than you, they’re just  busy!! There’s a difference. And you know what it is. Doesn’t it just frost your cookies when you seem to do the work of 3 and the guy next to you is swamped – but doing what?? At the end of a long day, you’re the one who’s exhausted, stressed out, worried about how to get more things done tomorrow, nervous about missing deadlines, etc. etc. etc. Meanwhile Swamped Sam leaves on time, and with a smile on his face and a wave of his hand says, “Have a great evening, see you tomorrow.” Rats! Busy people are sooooo irritating.

 

Well, as the saying goes, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.” So, here are some tips on the Art of Looking Busy:

 

·         Never be available.  You’re too busy to do that, help with that, or go to that.

·         Do not establish goals of any kind. You run the risk of finishing something.

·         Do not explain what you’re working on. When asked, reply with “Oh I don’t have time to give you details, it’s just way too complicated.”

·         Do not file anything or use a trash can. That’s what the top of your desk and the floor is for. 

·         If you own a smart phone, hide it. You don’t want people to get the wrong impression of you.

 

So, there you go. Follow these simple rules and I promise that you will become as ineffective, unproductive, incompetent and gainfully employed as Sam. Please don’t thank me for saving your job--I don’t have time to reply!

 

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Balancing

 

 

I’ve just returned from the beautiful state of Wyoming. I spent 10 wonderful days paddling the rapids of the Snake River, hiking the trails of the Tetons, and riding horseback up and down the mountain-side. The only visible sign of my adventures is a black and blue ankle—however my muscles have been crying out in pain ever since I stepped onto the airplane that brought me back to Chicago.

 

Mountains have a way of making people reflect and I was no exception. Struck by the beauty and the destruction of nature and the parallels to life—both personal and organizationally, I am compelled to share a few:

·         The water that destroys crops and homes is the same water that carves the magnificent canyons and cascades down from on high

·         The wildfires that destroy acres upon acres of forest also create new fertile lands

·         The decaying toppled trees create homes for the forest creatures

·         The wolves who hunt the elk and bison create sustainable Plaines for the herds that remain

·         Employees who wreak havoc on our organizational culture, once culled from the herd make way for emergent optimism and passion

·         Policies that work against a client-centered culture, once eliminated create the opportunity for world-class customer service

·         The job you lost creates an opportunity to rediscover what you love to do and pursue it with renewed passion

 

In the midst of today’s chaos, be patient, new life will emerge. Today…commit to create something wonderful.

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Summer Reading

Summer came early to Chicago. The Solstice hasn’t arrived yet and we’ve already  had more than 19 days of 90 degrees or higher and more than 3 days of 100 degrees or higher. These hot summer nights are perfect for reading…here’s my list, so far:

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life and In Business: by Charles Duhigg

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk: by: Ben Fountain

Steve Jobs: by Walter Isaacson

The Snow Child: by Eowyn Ivey

The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin: by Benjamin Franklin

And, of course:

Fifty Shades of Grey: by E.L. James (the entire trilogy ;)

We’re always looking for new reads and we’d love to hear what you’re reading—drop us a few characters: #F2Ftraining; or a few lines: Johnsong@face2facetraining.com  or post a note on our Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/?sk=pages&ap=1#!/pages/Face-to-Face-Communications-and-Training-Inc/86353212992

 

 

 

 

 

F2F POINT OF VIEW is an interactive newsletter for business professionals who value commitment and passion in their professional and personal lives. If you found something of interest in this newsletter, please forward it (in its entirety, please) to a friend or colleague.

The focus of F2F POINT OF VIEW is to provide brief insights into the world of interpersonal business communication. It is edited by Gail Johnson, CEO of Face to Face Communications and Training. For more information, a complementary consultation, or initial training assessment
email Gail or visit our website.